The Cassini probe is the result of a combined efort from the US, European and Italian space agencies. It has been exploring the Saturnian system since 2004, and is now on its inal mission as is it running out of fuel. It is currently navigating the space between the rings of Saturn and the top of the planet’s atmosphere in an efort to sample the gases in the upper atmosphere.
This month, Cassini completed the irst of ive passes by the planet, skimming just 1,600 kilometres above the clouds. The results from the sample are expected to show that the atmosphere is about 75 per cent hydrogen with a lot of helium and some other gases in trace amounts.